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Hannity Uses His Interview With Radical Imam To Smear Obama As Radical Islamic Sympathizer

Reported by Ellen - February 4, 2011 -

Wednesday night, Sean Hannity hosted “radical Imam” Anjem Choudary for the kind of “interview” in which Hannity called his guest “one sick, miserable, evil SOB.” The next night (2/3/11), Hannity brought on Islamophobe Brigitte Gabriel to fear monger about analyze the interview. As Gabriel predictably warned about imminent Islamic infiltration and villainy, Hannity used the segment to smear President Obama as somehow in bed with radical Muslims. Despicable, even by Fox News standards.

Hannity kicked off the interview on just the kind of note that must have warmed Gabriel’s heart - by playing a clip of Imam Choudary saying, “Islam is coming to your back yard!”

Gabriel wasted no time shrieking her accusations. But Hannity had more specific fish to fry:

Now, I asked him about the Muslim Brotherhood, the one point of agreement and I don’t think the rest of the world is recognizing this, is that the Muslim Brotherhood, Islamic radicals want to take over Egypt and Yemen and Jordan and the Middle East and Israel and the United States… I think people around the world, Great Britian, France, Belgium and even in the United States are having a hard time coming to grip with what radical Islamists believe. And the question is, how many of them agree with him? I think the numbers are too great, that we must contend with this radical view.”

Gabriel nodded her head in agreement as he spoke. When he finished, she went on another tear against Islam, the Koran, the Muslim Brotherhood and “their plan… for radical Islam to infiltrate and dominate the west.” According to Gabriel, they are now “implementing (the plan) here.” For what she undoubtedly knew would be bonus Fox News fear-mongering/academia-bashing points, she added, “What we are seeing is radicalism starting at university campuses by the Muslim student associations.”

But Hannity put aside – temporarily, I’m sure – focusing on universities in favor of his ultimate target, President Obama. “Our own White House is re-examining the relationship with this radical group, the Muslim Brotherhood,” Hannity said.

As Juan Williams very adeptly pointed out in a previous segment on more or less the same topic, it's perfectly pragmatic for President Obama to be willing to deal with the Muslim Brotherhood if they are going to be part of a coalition government of Egypt, a long-time ally, and it's not unlike our doing business with China and other countries we don’t exactly adore.

Furthermore, Hannity’s characterization of the Muslim Brotherhood is more than a bit overblown. Two of Hannity's own guests from two different conservative think tanks told him that the Brotherhood's involvement did not represent a lurch to radical Islam in Egypt. And while anyone who says the word “Allah,” probably sends Hannity into paroxysms of petrified paranoia, the truth is that the Muslim Brotherhood is hardly the Al Qaeda soulmate Hannity and guests such as Gabriel like to paint it as.

Hannity cleverly went back to his interview with Choudary for a little more incendiary fear mongering about suicide bombers and an explicit suggestion that that’s what’s coming our way – courtesy of President Barack Obama. I’m surprised Hannity left out the “Hussein.”

It's worth noting that Choudary has no apparent connection to the Muslim Brotherhood or to Egypt. But Hannity deliberately conflated them throughout the interview.

This is what’s frightening. If this is not fanatacism, you know, on a scale like fascism and Nazism, I don’t know what is.

Gabriel continued the conflation. “Muslims murdered Christians in Egypt!” she squawked. “Christians in Lebanon! Armenians in Turkey! Hindus in India! Jews in Arab land! All this happened before they ever turned their eyes to the United States! ...This is Islamic radicalism awakening world wide, driven by the Muslim Brotherhood, to bring back the Islamic caliphate or the empire and put the world under Islamic sharia law! Their true colors are shining and it’s time for the world to wake up, especially for us here in the United States, Sean, and learn a lesson of what’s happening in Europe and what’s coming to the United States!”

The music had started, signaling the end of the segment. But Hannity took one more opportunity to tie all that to Obama. “I would think the White House may want to reconsider their re-examination of the relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood. This is sick, miserable and evil and he is and I hope people can wake up to the fact that what’s really going on here.”

Sick, miserable and evil may apply to Choudary but it definitely applies to what Hannity and Gabriel were up to in this deliberately deceptive attempt to arouse fear and hate.

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